Manar to host discussion on education funding, other state issues in Decatur
Event part of Manar’s Capitol on Your Corner program
SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Andy Manar (D–Bunker Hill) is hosting a discussion on education funding and other state issues on July 9 in Decatur as part of his “Capitol on Your Corner” program.
The event is from 6 to 7:30 pm July 9 at the Homework Hangout at 249 S. Webster Street in Decatur.
Manar regularly hosts “Capitol on your Corner” events in communities across the 48th District to meet with constituents and answer questions about state government. But with the recent action in Springfield on Manar’s proposal to reform school funding, Manar anticipates the discussion at the event to focus on education.
“Illinois has the second-most inequitable school funding system in the nation. Our current funding system is doing a disservice to taxpayers, school districts and, most importantly, our children,” Manar said. “The funding system we are proposing will better address student needs, such as socio-economic background, language ability or special learning needs, while also accounting for a school district’s ability to raise funds locally.”
In early April, Manar introduced the School Funding Reform Act, a proposal to streamline the current hodgepodge of funding sources into one funding formula that would account for school districts’ funding needs. Today, only 44 percent of the state education spending is balanced against a local district’s ability to pay.
Keep an eye on www.SenatorAndyManar.com or subscribe to Senator Manar’s e-newsletter for more details. If you’re unable to attend a meeting, you can still share your thoughts with Senator Manar by visiting his website.
Dr. Charles Lucore, CEO, St. John’s Hospital, Springfield; Lori Williams, VP, Membership, IHA;
U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-13); Dan Raab, CEO, Taylorville Memorial Hospital; Rex Brown, CEO, Hillsboro Area Hospital; and Tom Eckels, VP, Public Policy and Advocacy, Hospital Sisters Health System
Springfield – The Illinois Hospital Association (IHA) presented its seventh annual Rural Legislator of the Year Award to U.S. Representative Rodney Davis (R-13) for his strong commitment and support of small and rural hospitals today.
“Congressman Davis understands the unique needs and challenges facing small and rural hospitals and their leaders as they work to transform the health care delivery system in Illinois,” said IHA President and CEO Maryjane A. Wurth. “The Congressman appreciates the critical role that the state’s small and rural hospitals play in their communities, not only as quality care providers, but also as economic engines—employing more than 39,000 people and having a total economic impact of more than $10.8 billion annually.”
Accepting the award, Congressman Davis thanked small and rural hospitals for “ensuring that my constituents have access to the same quality, life-saving care provided in more urban areas.” He referenced his wife, Shannon, a nurse, health care’s “biggest advocate.” The Congressman also reiterated the critical role of hospitals in the 13th District in providing care in rural communities.
“Helping you to continue to offer high quality care is a priority of mine in Washington,” said Congressman Davis. “That includes: helping you to train more doctors by increasing GME [graduate medical education] slots; preventing overregulation in Washington—like the 96-hour certification requirement, the two-midnight rule… and helping you to invest in new technology and techniques, like telemedicine, by supporting existing and new competitive grant programs.”
In his nomination of Congressman Davis for the award, Daniel J. Raab, President and CEO, Taylorville Memorial Hospital, said, “Congressman Davis regularly visits hospitals within his district and is enthusiastic in discussing rural health issues. He understands the barriers associated with those who struggle with access to health care, as well as the increasing demands on providers as they provide safe, clinically effective patient care.”
IHA’s Rural Legislator of the Year Award recognizes state and/or federal leaders for their efforts to pass legislation and support initiatives that improve the ability of rural hospitals to serve their communities. Recipients are based on nominations from small and rural hospital leaders.
IHA’s Small & Rural Hospitals Constituency Section includes 88 hospitals that either have fewer than 150 acute care beds and/or are located outside a metropolitan statistical area.
Springfield- Mike Bell (R-Edinburg), candidate for the 96th District, is urging his opponent, Rep. Sue Scherer (D-Decatur), to honor her promises to the residents of Central Illinois. Scherer has campaigned on a pledge to cut the salaries of lawmakers, including her own. Last week however, she voted to raise the pay for all Illinois legislators.
“The citizens of this district deserve for their representative to live up to her word,” said Bell. “But Sue keeps following a pattern of promising one thing to voters, then doing the exact opposite.”
This budget vote came just days after a similar move from Scherer. Despite campaigning to oppose an extension to the current income tax hike, Scherer voted for another budget that was based on extending the tax hike.
Bell said that, as for her most recent budget gaffe, Scherer was quoted in several media sources as saying that she didn't know the pay-raise was in the budget plan when she voted for it.
“If that's the case, then she cast a vote on one of the most important bills of the year without knowing what was in it. What other important bills did she vote on without reading?” asks Bell. “So either she doesn't do her homework, or she hasn't been honest with voters. Both are scary propositions indeed.”
Bell points out that Scherer began her political career by promising voters she would take on the Illinois political establishment and the status quo. Then she promptly began accepting tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from Mike Madigan and the Chicago Democrats.
“Who else represents the political establishment and the status quo more than the Chicago Democratic Machine? They've been running this state into the ground for years. It certainly looks like Sue is just taking their money and their marching orders,” said Bell. “It's time for a change. I take my directives from the citizens of Central Illinois, not Mike Madigan and Pat Quinn.”
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – In an attempt to help low-income residents who lose their jobs have access to financial aid for educational and job training programs, state Rep. Sue Scherer, D-Decatur, passed legislation out of the Higher Education Committee on Wednesday, making small changes to how MAP grants are given out, but with no added cost to the state.
“Across the state, and especially in my district, high jobless rates have left many people feeling like they have nowhere to turn, but I believe that we can open opportunities for more education and training,” said Scherer. “Without putting a greater burden on taxpayers, I am working to make sure that people who need assistance to go back to school or explore new career paths have support and options.”
Scherer’s Senate Bill 3306 would allow low-income workers who lose their jobs after financial aid application deadlines to have a shot at MAP grant funds to send them back to school or to job training programs. Scherer worked with the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC), the Senate sponsor, Sen. Chapin Rose, and colleagues throughout the state to find a way to help unemployed workers looking to attend college for job training. If passed, her proposal will apply for a two-year trial period, to track the progress of helping job seekers access funding without having to wait until the following year and without a cost to the state.
Scherer is hopeful that this change will help students who are motivated to learn a new field or skill be able to re-enter the job market quickly.“As unemployed workers seek to strengthen or re-tool their employable skills, they are returning to their local community college where they can obtain certificates or Applied Associate in Science degrees in areas such as Precision Machining (CNC), Metal Working (Welding), Mechatronics (Mechanical and Electronics), and Maintenance,” said Richland Community College President Dr. Gayle Saunders. “Community colleges work with our local Workforce Investment Boards to secure funding for some of these workers, but one thing that is almost certain, these workers do not have access to MAP funding simply because they have missed the MAP application deadline. This legislation seeks to correct this concern.”
Senate Bill 3006 is awaiting consideration by the House. For more information, please contact Scherer’s constituent service office at 217-877-9636, or by email at StateRepSue@gmail.com.Scherer represents the 96th District, which includes portions of Christian, Macon and Sangamon counties.
Scherer Votes to Waive License Plate Fee
for Wounded Veterans
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – To continue serving former military members and their families, state Rep. Sue Scherer, D-Decatur, voted to a cut state fees on license plates for wounded veterans recently. Scherer also supported legislation helping more veterans receive honorary license plates.
“Men and women who were wounded in defending our country have paid for our freedom, and they shouldn’t have to pay a state fee to have that sacrifice recognized,” Scherer said. “This bill will help veterans and their families make ends meet, and thank them for their service.
Scherer voted to pass House Bill 4491, which allows a person eligible for Purple Heart license plates to display the plate on one vehicle without payment of any registration or renewal fee. Currently, veterans must pay a registration fee or registration renewal fee for each plate applied for or received. The measure received bipartisan support in the House, and now awaits consideration in the Senate.
Scherer also helped to pass a number of bills giving more veterans and their families the ability to receive honorary license plates. House Bill 5143 creates World War II Illinois Veterans Memorial license plates for cars and trucks; House Bill 5486 creates the Yellow Ribbon license plate for cars and trucks; and House Bill 5475 adds sons or daughters of fallen soldiers to the list of family members who may display Gold Star license plate recipients. Currently, the Gold Star license plate is reserved for any Illinois resident who is the surviving widow, widower, sibling or parent of a person who served in the military of the United States and lost his or her life during peacetime or war.
“Serving veterans and their families is a solemn duty and a tremendous responsibility,” Scherer said. “I will continue to support efforts to reduce the burden on veterans, assist their transition back into civilian life and honor their many sacrifices.”
Scherer represents the 96th District, which includes portions of Christian, Macon and Sangamon counties.